Tuesday, September 6, 2005
Page 2 Quickie: September 5, 2005
The Lead Item
Two Words For You:
"We're all Saints fans."
That's an appealing notion and a fine fundraising
slogan. It also might help to justify NFL
consideration of putting the Saints on the road for
its entire slate of home games.
I have no doubt the Saints would be received as
ambassadors of the embattled region; opposing fans
couldn't possibly boo.
And let's not forget: Heartless calculation is at the
heart of the NFL's success. The salary cap. The
contracts. The blackout rule.
The NFL already put logistics first by announcing that
the Saints would play their Week 2 home opener vs. the
Giants in New York.
Is this an indication that they'll play every
"home" game in the other team's stadium, rather than
somewhere geographically relevant like Baton Rouge or
Should the NFL do what's best for the NFL... or its
The league can spin the idea as a 16-game, feel-good
road show, but it turns the Saints into a twisted
refugee reflection of its fan base.
Pity cheers from opposing fans just isn't the same as
cheers heard in Baton Rouge or anywhere else where
Louisianians or Mississippiians or Alabamians
It's not the same as allowing emotionally, financially
and physically shattered people to cling to something
fantastical like football.
NFL and team leadership must do what's best for the
fans. That means keeping the Saints local.
We all might be Saints fans, in some larger
existential sense, but not nearly as important as
real Saints fans.
New Word: "Soonered"
Word of the Day: "Soonered."
Definition: To blow your CFB national title
hopes in the very first week of the season, at home,
on national TV, to an unranked foe.
Used in a sentence:
"Oklahoma was Soonered."
Coming Tuesday: My first official rant of the
season about the rankings system, which I'm sure won't
punish OU enough.
Coll. FB Wrap
VA Tech nearly "Soonered":
But, unlike OU, they were on the road against an
underrated N.C. St that had proven in '04 they could
beat the Hokies. (But that was pre-Vick.)
Sunday BCS Watch: Louisville
My pick to face USC in the Rose Bowl had an
inauspicious debut, as the Cards had to rely on
bruising RB Michael Bush to hold off Kentucky,
Tonight's Make-or-Break Game:
Miami at FSU (8, ABC): Both team's fans must be
thrilled their title hopes are in the hands of
untested QBs Wright (UM) and Weatherford
On! Notre Dame: Weis rules!
Off! Boise St: I was fooled!
Next week: Texas at Ohio St.:
Someone's title hopes end.
Top plot: OSU QB controversy
Three rules, let's be clear:
1) Best player/most talented
2) Forget rep (05 perf. only)
3) This week > Last week
See "Big 5" for my ranking, and "DQ'd" for a
preseason contender now all-but-eliminated from the
Heisman watch list. (Hint: A.P.? Ugh-ly!)
"Trying to loot my players:" U. of New
Orleans hoops coach Monty Towe got my attention with
his vivid description of attempts by unsavory folks to
woo his star player, Bo McCalebb.
Which big-time programs' boosters might be this
soul-suckingly evil? On a hunch, I checked out
prominent teams that McCalebb lit up. (Oh, you know
who you are....)
Rice considering retirement: Made
Broncos' roster, but won't be a Top-3 WR. As always,
my position: He can do whatever he wants.
Frerotte to start for Fins: Nick Saban might as
well name Matt Leinart the starting QB for Miami at
Cowboys sign Peerless Price: Over/under on the
number of weeks until they realize this isn't 2003:
(Hey, Tuna: FYI, Pats castoff David Terrell is
suddenly available. You seem to have an interest in
overrated "name" WRs.)
Giants release Bachelor: At least Jesse Palmer
can fall back on that reality-TV career. (Wait: He
can't? Aha: Worst. Career Move. Ever.)
MLB Wknd Wrap
Carpenter wins No. 20: When Clemens
left the game in the 5th with the hammy strain while
Carp went the distance, the Cards ace sealed his
Dontrelle wins No. 19: Does anyone actually
think the Phillies or Astros will hold off the Marlins
for the NL Wild Card?
AL Cy Watch: Why not Bartolo? Angels ace Colon
gritted through back pain to win his 18th (and 7th
straight dec.) before leaving in 5th.
AL Wild Card: Yankees win 2/3 in OAK, but not
content. "We're still in a race for the A.L. East, so
that's what our approach is." (Jeter)
Wells wins in comeback from suspension, then
re-iterates the "I was wrong" programming he was given
at MLB offices last week.
Open: Blake Mania!
Who needs Roddick's mojo? The best
story of the U.S. Open is James Blake's surge,
especially his win over Nadal. The "J-Block" has
become Blake's version of "home-court
Quickie 50/50: DC
Call it "51/51." Impressions? "Hail to
the Redskins"; "Hoya Paranoia"; Bullets' "Fat Lady" in
'78; Nats (April-June 2005).
Life is a closed road to me.
Quickie On Campus
GAINESVILLE, FLA. -- Memo to College
GameDay: When you next roll up to the Swamp, be
sure to enjoy the hospitality of the guys at Delta Tau
Delta. I didn't end up in a Tigger suit like Caple,
but a tailgatin' good time was had by all before the
game on Saturday.